UNITrED S'IATF S DEP1P EMENT 0O' AGR ICULTURE
B-areau of -Agricultural Economics
TAXATION OF REYLED FARMS -1919
A Preliminary Report
introduction ... . .. . . ..
Relation of Property Taxes to Cash R ent of Farm Real Estate.......................
Sale Vplue as the Masis of Real Estate
Ta1xaLioL.... .................................... 7
ReI)L--ticn of Taxes to Rent of Urban Real
Distri-butlion of Property Taxes According to
Lvigjurisdiction and -Purpose ......... 13 Ap elx...................................... 18
Digitized by the Internet Archive
C. 0. Brannen, Associate Agricultural Economist, and a ,-, A.; i ul u a] 0 o iq t ,~
J. T. Sanders, Assistuant Agricultural economist, Bureau of Agriculturel Economnics.
ThYe Yation's development has been marked by growth in governmental expense. In earlier days taxes were levied mainly for the purpose of maintaining law and order. Since that time public education, public health, public highways and various other activities formerly undertaken at private expense, have become functions of government. In addition, most of the older established functions have been expanded and broadened to meet the growth of population and wealth and the consequent development of a more complicated economic society. Underlying this movement has been the growing belief that more and better services may be had at less cost by collective spending and that all the people should have the benefit of certain advantages necessary to the advancement of the Nation.
This is the normal development of the progressive community. Increased demands for public service cannot be satisfied, however, without increased taxation. The evidence of this is to be seen on all sides. Total tax revenues in the United States increased from 1913 to 1922, from slightly less than four billion to almost eight billion dollars, or 198 per cent. 1jI A considerable part of this increase in taxation, of course, resulted from the late war. But it is estimated by the Bureau of the Census that State and' local taxes increased 115 per cent durin7 the same period and that the general property tax, which is the chief source of State and local revenues, increased 160 per cent in the ten-year period.
The expansion in governmental activities with the acconty)ning
increase in public expenditures, however, is not the problem with which we have to deal. This tendency appears in the development of all civilized countries. Occasional reductions in the volume of taxes may appear,
/ Report of the Census, 1922.
yet in the long run further increases in taxation may be expected. While
tax reduction alone will not solve the problem of inequitable taxation, it is always advisable to consider the possibility of retrenchment. The primary problem, however, is to bring about a more equitable distribution of the public burden on all classes of property and all taxpayers.
Under our multiple system of government the relationship of the individual to the State and to the minor governmental subdivisions is complex. In view of this complexity and the variety of special forms of taxation which have in part supplanted earlier uniform methods, a statistical measurement of the relative tax burden or of the tax obligation has become increasingly difficult. In fact, it may be questioned whether an accurate statistical measurement is ever possible, but statistics ma y be employed in a very general way to indicate the tax situation of certain broad groups of taxpayers.
The problem of State and local taxation, particularly as it relates to farmers, hinges very largely on the methods of general property taxation, for most of State and local revenues are derived from the general property tax. Of all tax revenues in the 48 States in 1922, 83 per cent came from this source. The dependence on general property taxes as the chief source of revenues varies somewhat with the States, as shown in Talle 1 of the Appendix. In Texas general property taxes represented 96.3 per cent of all tax revenues, and in Delaware they represented 55.9 per cent.
There are two generally accepted viewpoints from which taxation may be considered. It may be considered as personal in relation to the individual's personal ability to pay, or it may be considered as objective in relation to business or proper ty earnings. The amount of taxes paid in the first case should be considered in the light of its effect on the total income of the individual and the personal sacrifice made because of the tax. The amount paid in the second case is to be considered in its effect on the business venture, although any tax is in a measure personal and is sure to result in some degree of sacrifice.
In view of the fact that the tax on real estate under the general
tax system has become, in practice, a tax on property as such, we may consider this part of the farmer's total taix in relation to farm real estate
earnings. The defects of the general property tax system are well Exown. The tax is based on capital value, irrespective of either personal or property inrcomes. A tax of this nature applied uniformly to practically all classes of property will affect the earnings of one class more than another. For example, one class of'property may yield an average rate of return of 10 per cent while another yields 2 per cent, yet the tax based on sale value may be the same. If the tax is equivalent to one per cent of sale value, it might absorb O10 per cent of the income in one case end 50 ner cent in the otner. Besides, there are varying degrees of difficulty in reaching different classes of property for taxation by this method. The greater the extent to ,hich this is tiue, the greater will be the inequality in taxation in relation to inccne or earnings. For these and other reasons State and local taxation operates to the peculiar disadvantage of farmers.
The purpose of the present study has been to determine for the year 1919 the relation of State and local property taxes on real estate to farm real estate earnings. The real estate tax is compared with income from rent of farms rented for cash in selected areas. Data for owner-operated
-farms have not been included because of the greater difficulty of obtaining the earnings of farms operated by their owners. Earnings of land based on cash :rent are considered representative of land income at a given time in communities where cash rent is prevalent.j1
For comparison with the tar on farms, date, were collected in a few of the counties to show the relation of taxes to rent of urban real estate. Analyses were made to indicate the nronortions of the tax levied by the State, by the county and by local governmental agencies, and to show the major purposes for which such taxes were levied.
A total of 3,221 farms in 31 counties in 26 States are included in
the study. The number of acres is shown in Table- 1. The counties selected for -study are considered fairly representative of the agricultural sections in which they are located, although some of them may be slightly above the average for the State as a whole. In size, extent of improvement, average value per acre, and the percentage of the total value of real estate in improvements, as shown in Table 2 of the Appendix, the selected farms are generally representative of all farms in the county.
Relation of Prorerty Taxes to Cash Rent of Farm Real Estate
'operty taxes, State and local, absorbed in 1919 a large part of the net rent of farms in most of the counties included in this survey. This was true even though ir that time rents were relatively high and taxes relatively low. Since 1919 rents have-declined and taxes have increased. Though the percentage of rent used in the payment of taxes was rather large in'most of the areas, yet it was much higher in some than in others. (Table 1) The tax expressed in percentage of net rent was highest in the Middle Atlantic and some of the Western States and lowest in the Southern States. In general this percentage for te North Central and Rocky Mountain States fell between these extremes.% 2/ In selected counties surveys were made of all cash-rerted farms of ten or more cultivated acres as reported by the census of 1920. Where there was evidence of kinship between landowner and tenant or where the data mere otherwise inadequate for this purpose, farms were not included. 7From census records were taken the numxoer of acres, cash rent paid in 1919 and valuation of land and improvements. The number of acres, assessed valuation, taxes levied as of 1919, and other necessary information were obtained from official records by personall visit to the county. Special assessments and acreage taxes
for drainage or levee were not included in the tax statistics.
The study was made by the Division of Agricultnural Finance and the Division of Land Economics, Bureau of Agricultural Econonics.
3J To ascertain net rent before taxes were paid, allowance was made for
depreciation and repairs and for insurance of farm buildings. n making the deduction for depreciation and repairs, the annual rate of depreciation and
Table* 1.Relation of Taxes to Yet Cash Rent of Fair' Real Estate Per Acre and -Percentage of. Rent Absorbed by Taxes, 1919.
: 1Tet rent .: Relat-ion of
S t ate :per acre : Tax : taxes to
and F Fa rms /1~ beforee t er :Net Rent
C 0 -a r. t y :dextn *.Acre -(before deduct~ txes :in taxes)
Yh-unb er : Acre-s : Dollaqrs 'Dollars : Per Cent
New York -Delaware : 137 : 20-,794 : 1.23 .38, 30.9
N iagara 86 : 6,170 : 2.75 .85 : 30.92
Pennsylvania Chester :-177 ': 13,525 : 1,.83 :'1.20 : 65.6
Ohio Franhlin 90 7,279 6.30,,. 1.41 L 2.4
Indiana T iptona 77 .: 6,293 : 9.38 1,.41 1;15 0
Illinoi kcopi 79 ; 7,510 : 3.52 .4 : 1.
llcia'- Laaivee 111 : 6,863 : 4.40 :.1.67 : 38.0
iiistonzin Dane : 106' : 11,553 : .8 : 1.18 : 29.6
Minnesota MicLeod 87 12,24 5 : 3,49 -85 .24.4
South Dakota Moody : 128 : 29,475 : 4.76. 7 16.2
Iowa Union 113 : iC,094 : 5.29 .84 : 15.9
Story : 100 : 14,217,: 7..28., 1.37 18.8
Nebra'a Viayne S8 16,161 : 5.74 .67 : 11.7
Kansas Bu~tler 1-55 42,787 : 1.73 .4i. 23.7
Virginin SouthamptCon : 36 5,032 : 1.96, .11 :5.6
North Carolina F-alifax: 16-1 : 29,235 : 2.08- .13 : ~6.3
Georgia leckley' : -150 14,810 : 2.94 ..22 -: 7.5
Alabhama Lontgc)nery : 1811 7,3S3 ?,--.41 .17 :7.1
bissi~ssippi T-, ni-ca 101 6,810 : 14.24 : 1. 61 : 1L-3
Tennessee Puta'erford : 95 7,684 : 3. 14 -24.: 7.6
Ar]kansas -St. Francis : 37 -:-2,561 : 5.11, .53 : --10.4
Oklaho-ma P;?r yne : 196.. 26, 29 : 130- : 38 : 29.2
Colorado -Del ta 57. 3,899:- 4.496.
Otero : 42,52213 12.63 -: 2.19 -1.
Utah -Salt Lake 28 987 : 9.81 : 2.82 : 28-7
Idaho -Ada : 66 : 3,-032 10. 02 ~. 2. 85 : 28. 4
-Madison 32 : 2,582 : 1.31 1.75 6
Oregon -Washington : 115 : 11,880 : 4.34 : 1.64 V 37. 8
California -Sacramento 130 : 11,814 10.49 1.36 : -1.
erced 118 : 12,091 -9.783- 1. 63 : 16.7
A rizona -Maricopa 132 : 11,155 26.71 '.2.61 :9.8
/1 Acreage is that appearing oi the tax record, which is not alwav-)y s
identical with census acreage shown in Table 2, of theapedx
The relation of taxes to rent will, of course, vary- in different
places depending upon economic as well as tax conditions. It is not possible to explain all of these conditions, but the extent to wh.ch the data shown for different areas lack comparability may be pointed out. This will explain in part the different percentages shown for the counties surveyed.
In the Southern States the so-called rent includes not only real estate rent, but returns for management and risk. The percentages shown for Southern counties, therefore, are lower than they would be if the rent proper could have been accurately determined. in dairying or trucking sections where most of the land is operated by owners, the rent charge on the few farms that happen to be leased is likely to be nominal. Also in sections wPere farms are over-improved, that is, where the value of farm buildings is more than is ordinarily required for farm nee0s, the net rent is less than it otherwise would be because of the larger ded-uction made for depreciation and insurance, while the landowner in suc-h cases probably received no rent for improvements in excess of farm needs.
In Chester County, Pennsylvania,. the value of imprcvmrents was approximately half of the total value of real estate, and the reduction made for depreciation and insurance was over half of the gross rent. It is for this reason, in part at least, that the percentage shown for Chester County, and for other counties where similar conditions prevail, is higher then in other counties. The net income of the selected farms, and the percentage of the rent required in the payment of taxes, may thus be higher or lower than the average for the areas studied, according to the effect of such special conditions. The results of the study should be considered as broadly indicative of the relation of taxes to real estate earnings rather than as conclusive evidence that an exact percentage of earnings is required in the payment of taxes in any particular county.
The relative amount of the tax on farm'real estate under the prevailing system of State and local taxation may be affected by any of the following factors: (1) Exemption of farm real estate, (2) classification of property for taxing purposes, (3) percentage assessment of farm red estate as.compared with other classes of property, (4) degree of dependence upon- property taxes for State, county and local revenues, (5) the extEnt of development of public improvements as affecting the volume of' expenditures,
repairs on farm buildings ascertained in farm management and cost of production studies made by the U. S. Department of Agriculture in the various States was applied to the census valuation of improvements on 'the farms studied.
For the cost of insurance, the current rates of insurance in the different States, ascertained by the Department of Agriculture, was applied to three-fourths of the census valuation of improvements, which allows a conservative reduction for the cost of insurance. In any case the margin of error is small, since this item of expense is relatively unimportant in most arees. The rates used for depreciation and repairs and the average rate of insurance from 19.16 to 1920 are given for the several counties in Table 3 of the appendix. -.
(6) the extent to which other classes escape taxation under the general property tax system, and (7) the use of sale value as the only basis of real estate assessment.
Farm real estate included in this report enjoyed no exemption from taxation of any consequence. In South Dakota, dwelling houses occupied by owners were exempt in 1919 to the extent of $500, although such exemption did not apply in case of rented farms. In Indiana, 50 per cent of the mortgaged value of farm real estate was subject to exemption not to exceed $1,000 (Table 5 of the Appendix). To the extent that other classes of property are exempt, land may be expected to bear a heavier tax.
The classification of property for different rates of assessment under the general property tax had no influence on the amount of the tax, except in the Minnesota county, where farm real estate was .ssessed at onethird of "full value," while certain other classes of property were assessed at a higher percentage. The legal provision in certain States for assessing all property at only a part of the actual value, as, for example, in Iowa, Illinois and Alabama, had the effect of reducing taxes on real estate in so far as public revenues were derived from sources other than the general property tax.
The policy or practice of disregarding legal requirements and assessing property at varying percentages of actual value certainly has its effect on the amount of the tax in individual cases but whether farm real estate in the aggregate bears less tax thereby is a debatable question.' Low valuations are accompanied by high rates of levy, and the practice of partial assessment affords greater opportunity for inequality all around. greater degree of equality is probably attained under the classified property tax with thorough assessment of all classes of property at full value, provided the percentage of 'value to be taxed for different classes follows earning capacity.
The state of a county's development in public improvement reflects to a considerable extent the amount of public expenditure and likewise the amount of the real estate tax. Good roads and modern school buildings account for a large part of such tax, since the revenues for such purposes are derived usually from local taxation. No great difference can be seen in this respect as between older and more newly developed counties. In the older counties considerable improvement may have been made in the past, which in many cases now has to be done over, whereas in newer settled coun-ties such improvement is just now under way. The chief difference exists as between the county that is making large expenditures for roads and schools, either initial or replacement, and the county which .is not making such expenditure s.
The amount of the tax on farm property may also be higher in one State than another depending upon the extent to which schools, road and similar public services are financed by means of local taxation. The effect of this factor was not determined for the counties surveyed. The tax is likely to be less than it would be otherwise, however, where the State de- rives considerable revenues from sources other than the general property tax.
Only three States included in this report,' New York, Pennsylvania and California, levied in 1919 no property 'tax for State purposes.4/ In these States the ratio of tax to both census validation and cash rent was comparatively high. This situation may have resulted from the greater public expenditure-rather than from-a disproportionate tax on real estate. In certain other States that rely on other sources of revenue for State purposes, such as Ohio, Minnesota, Virginia, North Carolina, and-Alabama, taxes on farm real estate appeared more*favorable in comparison with censusvaluation and cash rent, but since State revenues constitute only a minor~part of total revenues, absence of the State taxi as a rule, has a minor effect in reducing taxes on real estate.
Whether little or no State property tax levy gives comparative relief from taxation depends upon the extent to which the State distributes
revenues from other sources in support of local'institutions and facilities, such as schools and roads. If -such local functions are supported by local taxes, no large measure of relief will be felt by real estatemerely by eliminating the taxation of real 'estate for State purposes-.
The collection of occupation and-business 'taxes-by counties, a characteristic of the local systems of taxation in some of the Southern States, probably has some effect in reducing taxes on land in Southern counties.
It has always been the case that while many other classes of property escape assessment, real estate never does.' As the administration of the general- property tax becomes more effective in the assessment of real
estate, it 'becomes perhaps less effective iri reaching many classes of personal property. If all other classes of property subject to the tax were assessed with equal efficiency, as real estate, the tax on real estate would probably be reduced in most of the States 'by a very substantial amount.
Sale Value as the Basis of Real Estate TaxationFarm real estate is assessed for taxation by 'State and local governments on the basis of market or sale value. Sale value of land has been defined as "nothing bu the capitalized value of net profits ordinarily derived from its use." .5/. As expressed by another writer, the value to be assigned to a given tract of land depends upon (1) the income which the land yields at a given time, (2) the anticipated increases or decreases in this income., and (3) the rate of.capitalization of such income.. It is evident from these definitions that there are two primary elements in the
4J In New York the State levied a property tax for 'schools which was practically offset in the two counties studied by apportionment of State funds for schools by the State Commissioner of Education in accordance with the provisions of the education law. See article 4, section*71, of the Tax Law
of the State of New York, 1920.
J Seligman, E. R. A., Incidence of Taxation, 4th Edition, p. 262.
6] Chambers, C. R., Relation of Land Income to Land Value, U. S. Department Bul. No. 1224, p. 28.
value of real'estate, it's ann-aal, or ilse-'4a1 ue and i-tb speculativ-e value. If it is atsujned that the income -is' entirely of a monetary- nature, the importance o f each of there -element's : may be ap~oiiff.tely measii:red. The capitalizp-d an'nuatl rental-may be- used to represent the -annual value, anid censusv~u~aio ma b se.t'ejxr'esent- the*- ,'rb onb~' d annual. Ai~ speculative value-,. that is, the-selling price.- The diffbence between census val.uationi and the capitalized a~anu~j rental'by this method would represent- thd&4art of sale value w ichs based on expected increase or decrease in'-income.The curr ent" lon -'term mortgages, iate of' init-bst 'may be usi'd ini capitalizing net cash rental, 'or*it'is assumed t t -'eT-f'arier 'as a rule~ has the alternative oselng his farm and investing the proceeds in such of7~i
When Using this rate'as re~ortled by the '-enius: for capitalizing
annual, -rental, it is found(abd2'ta r eldtiie'ly- stall percentage of
census valua'tiomi is- represent'ed, by an ialf-_1come-. .".'"The' 'apitai~ized rental in -only one Of the 31 counties iy~s xiior'e'-thin-a 'hundred~ per cent of -cen~sus valuation.. Outside the southern and a few of the western St#ates it was 50
per ent'orles. 'n' iitherni counties, exveji 'ayne- C6ouiity, Oklahoma, the capitalized'cash rental -Was" mcdre than 50 prcntofcen'sus valiati on, al-though -the rental iun this region -is in6'at:--rtuxi foi~ffianagement and risk.
in. fact, 'in te maoiy of 6case~s' annual jrental -accounted for less than half of the valuatian t~ported ~ the census and. -in 15 of the 31 countie ,s it accounted for less' t'han t'~if ths. Tae low f igure of 10. 5 per
c~~en't ~e 'hw frIstr- -C-ounty, Teiinsjlvania,'- might have been dLe to the
ielatfvel~~~~~y low 'average rate of retifrn-on cds-iied.:ajn a o~r4wt
all f arms in 'the county or to the -greater deduction mAd-e from rent for depr'eciatio'n and insurance on -ex-e-s izrgrovemferfts. 'It .is also possiblee that the farms surveyed in Chester County were not representative for other reasons.'
In the middle western .coinities, 'Where' capitalized annual rental perhaps ifore accurately reflects'real estate earni1n'gs.- less- than -half of the census -valuat~ion of 1920'a-ccord~ing to tihi-s-methiod of 'cal~culation, is assignable to current in~oin6e at tI i .t_ time (Table -3). The remainder may be considered as -bgjed 6n-:the 'mere expectation *that rents would increase at some future -time.
This means tha t the greater part of 'th6-sale value of' these farms
in 1919 was base d..on the. e.xpectation that rentals would-increase. This expetaio hs o' "ee ralie. Instead of increatig rentals have' been
meterially red-aced, in some -cases as mu~ch as 50 percent. .A recent .study of'more. than 100 farms 1.1 in Indiania shows rents froiii'1919 to 1923 to have declined'frora'$7-49. t 0 $4.25 per acre, while'-the-tal increased from'90 cents to $1.41 per acre.27
?J flepartm6nt Bulletin cied bove- pp. 42-:45.
sJ Press release of the Department of Agriculture deated March'25, 1924.
Table 2. Capitalized Net Cash Rental Compared with Census Valuation, 1919.
: Capitalized : Census : Capitalized
State : ne t cash :Valudtion : net cash
and, : rental per : rental in per
C o u n t y : per acre : acre- : cent of census
:. Dollars Dollars : Per cent
New York -Delaware 16.35 : 28.57 : 57.2
Niagara : 35.19 : 110.31 : 31.9
Pennsylvania Chester -: 12.12 : 115.71 : 10.5
Ohio Franklin. : 82.88 : 194.67 : 42.6
Indiana -- Tipton : 139.82 : 238.63 : 58.6
Illinois acoupin : 51.43 : 27.58 : 40.3
Michigan Lenawee : 4?.89 : 126.43 : 37.9
Wisconsin Dane : 54.90 : :154.95 : 35.4
Minnesota McLeod : 49.81 : 136.61 : 36.5
South Dakota Moody : 72.55 : 206.39 : 35.2
Iowa tnion : 80.91 : 165.83 : 48.8
Story : 109.44 296.07 : 37.0
Nebraska -TVayne 0 93.89 : 243.31 : 38.6
Kansas Butler : 22.00 : 57.01 : 38.6
Virginia Southampton : 30.83 : 39.80 : 77.5
North Carolina -: Halifax : 32.50 47.86 67.9
Georgia Bleckley : 38.86 : 41.46 : 93.7
Alabama Montgomery : 34.46 : 50.81 : 67.8
Mississippi Tuhica : 203.71 : 133.65 : 152.4
Tennessee Rutherford : 48.33 : 68.66 : 70.4
Arkansas St. Irancis : 61.07 : 99.24 : 61.5
Oklahoma Payne : 14.84 : 37.56 : 39.5
Colorado Delta 43.24 : 79.02 : 54.7
Otero, : L53.38 : 187.40 : 81.8
Utah Salt Lake : 99.86 : 278.13 : 35.9
Idaho Ada : 99.58 : 237.84 : 41.9
Madison : 123.90 : 252.12 49.1
Oregon Washington : 44.26 : 136.51 : 32.4
California Sacramento : 142.66 : 184.85 : 77.2
Eerced : 123.48 : 221.49 : 55.7
Arizona Maricopa : 317.11 : 307.75 : 103.0
1 The rates of capitalization used for different counties were the prevailing farm mortgage rates reported by the census of 1920.
Table 3. Percentage of Census Valuation Assignable to
Current Income From Rent, Capitalized at
Average Rate of Interest on First Mortgages,
State -: : Census Valuation
and : Census :Assignable to : Assignable
County : Valuation : capitalized : to other
: net rental : factors
I Per Cent : Per Cent : Per Cent
Ohio Franklin 100.0 42.6 57.4
Indiana Tipton -100.0 58.6 41.4
Illinois Macoupin 100.0 40.3 59.7
Michigan Lenawee :100.0 37.9 62.1
Wisconsin Dane '100.0 35.4 64.6
Minnesota McLeod 100.0 36.5 63.5
South Dakota --Moody 100.0 35.2 64.8
Iowa Union '100.0: 48.8 51.2
-Story 100.0 37.0 63.0
Nebraska Wayne 100.0 38.6 61.4
Kansas Butler .i00.0 -38.6 61.4
The fluctuation in rent, as-well as the fluctuation in land values, illustrates the uncertain foundation upon which the farm real estate tax based on sale value rests. The annual tax .is based not only on present income but on predicted incomes which may or may not be realized. If all property subject to the general property tax possessed equally this conditional element, assaming uniform assessments, the chance of inequality because of this factor would be greatly reduced. But this is not the case. The value of many classes of property other than farm land follows closely capitalized-annual income, or if not closely, certainly more closely than farm real estate. In fact, the value o real estate itself follows more closely the capitalized annual .earnings in the case of some farms than others. This variation in the relation of annual and sale value of farms explains in part 'the different percentages of rents absorbed by taxes, shown in Table I.
Table 4. Annual Rental Capitalized at Average
Interest Rates in RPelation to. Assessed Valuation, 1920.
State : Capitalized Rental,
and : Per Cent of
County A: ssessed Valuation
: Per Cent
Ohio Franklin : 71.3
Indiana Tipton : 71.0
Illinois Macoupin- :.127.1
Michigan-- Lenawee : 46.4
Wisconsin Dane- 47.7
*Minnesota McLeod : 48.7
South Dakota Moody 76.6
Iota Union -: 120.5
Story : 114.0
Nebraska -"Wayne : -63.5
Kansas Butler : .62.7
When the annual value, as derived above, is compared with assessed valuation, Table 5, it is found that the capitalized annual rental in 8 of the .11 counties surveyed in the North Central States represented -less than 77 per cent of the assessedvaluation. In 3 of the counties it represented less than 50 per cent, while in 3 of the counties it-was more than 100per cent of assessed valuation. This illustrates the slight relation that exists in some State.s between the annual income from farms and the annual tax. The variability in the relatio of the tax to census valuation is shown in Table 6 of the Appendix.
Relation of Taxes to Rent of Urban Real Estate
Taxes on urban real estate, in percentage of net rent ascertained for'a limited number of properties in 10 counties where farm surveys were made. The percentage in 7 of the 10 counties, as shown in Table 5, was
PrctjaiYthe samet a-s* that .fouild, foy .farm 'real v. tate in the same coun'tie. In- two -of- the counties -thi s per~certage forfarm .real estate was itwo a, ahalf .t imes that for-,the, urbe-n,Lo/ an;1 in Washington. County; Orego n, o-ne and a, half ,tixnea as =mip4i.4
r1'.hie b~jiilaings rppr esent higher -p ercen7itage' of-' the -value of 'urban
raestate tban ofam ',bu5.~ercn o hse properties) urban
-adrural:- real -ebtate: are near- enough -alike" -in- most :respects f or trustwor thy .compari-son of -the, taxes.-in relation. to 'rents. ,Taxes on urban re'aI
estae ic~ue ~n prt pe-ia Imranicipal ,.1Jevibs foi,'providing special
facilities such, as light and wate~ ,-which the.-farmer' ]prov-ide's-at private expense., If only taxes br: the same. 'or: simi lar -Pux'pose s. had 'been i nc lided in, these statist's ,the- taxc -in. -percentage of 'rent .of urb'6-n -real e state would, have been less in practically all counties than th?-t shown for farms.
Table .'Property Taxeig of Urban Real' Estate, Percentage
of ~Net- Rent- 1919.-' --'-:Relation of'
Appro-ximate: Average' Taxes to
S ta te, -proP:P- average .:ne t -etliveae net rent
And er- :value of :(Before :Tax on :(Before deC 0 u ni t y :ties :land and :deducting.." R-eal- ducting
buildingss :taxes)/l :!'Bstate taxe s)
-;Vumber: Dollars :Dollars.* D Pllaits :o Per Cent
New York Niagara,- 15 :$ 17,662 :$ 1,,604 :$197.99: 12.3
Indiana -Tipton ;20 : 11,827 1.322--: 208.74: 15.8Illinois Ulaco-upin 48 : 14,369 -917-':-'- 144.80: 15.8
Wisconsin Dane '*:- 9 : 216,504 35,429 : ,3,956.60: .11.2
M4innesota McLeod*.1 :, 21 : ,685 :638 : 158;.52: AS
South Dakota -Mood.y''- 10,903 :612- 1 28..11i 20.9
Iowa Union :16 1: --1329-~ 212. 17: 16.0
Kansas -.3utler,. 15 -':-- -6961 : -.3, 634 : 814. 06: 22.4
Colorado Delta :17 : 13,611 : 1,094 : 278.59: 25.5
Oregon Washington : 5:-]62 : -1, 186 ': 335.,96: 28.3
El DPeduction fromn gros ret-ootain..n t rent, Anclude repisad isuranc' eportedfor the. -pro'per ties and Z -per Cent -of d~sessed. valuation df' buildings for structura1'e~ri-ain
9J Thse 'ev~n ountes ar e -Tip ton, Indiana-, bacoujin, lio~MIe
Min ot;Mody, South Dkt a, nion ~ oa;Bulr Kaiisas; and. Delta',.
LO/ Counties: Niagara, New-York; 'Dane, Wisconsin.
~4/Theurbn ral st~t~ inl~d-d~n he 'e -counti'es was mainly business property With bri-ckd:nd-sto fe .structures in good or medium condition, exce pt in, McLeod county, Xi-nnesptVq, and- Moody County- South Dakota, where 'Some frame'residences were included., -
Figure 6. Distribution of Property Taxes
According to Levying Jurisdiction.
S t a t e : Levied by
C o u n t y State : County :and Local
Per Cent: Per Cent : Per Cent
Pennsylvania Chester : -- 18.3 81.7
Ohio Franklin 5.5 47.6 : 46.9
Indiana Tipton /4 21.2 : 23.2 55.6
Michigan Lenawee -[5 21.6 : 57.3 : 21.1
South Dakota Moody- /6 20.8 : 66.6 12.6
Iowa Union /7 14.6 : 38.5 46.9
Story 11.0 : 34.1 : 54.9
Nebraska Wayne 26.0 : 29.1 : 44.9
Alabama Montgomery 38.2 : 61.8 : -Mississippi Munic /8: 14.7 : 74.7 10.6
Tennessee Rutherford : 30.1 : 13.7 56.2
Arkansas St. Francis : 21.5 : 24.3 54.2
Colorado Delta : 16.5 : 30.4 53.1
Otero 18.4 : 30.9 50.7
Idaho kadison Li 25.3 : 51.6 23.1
California Merced : 79.3 20.7
/1 Including all property taxes levied in the county in
1919 except special municipal, drainage or levee and irrigation taxes, unless specifically stated otherwise.
(As reported by county officials or computed from official reports).
/ Only taxes levied on 177 selected farms.
03 Only taxes levied on rural property.
iA The district road tax is classed with township and local
district taxes, although in many cases the township road
is a part of the county system.
5 Including drainage tax.
6 Not including taxes on moneys and credits and telephone
7 Taxes on rural property.
8 Taxes on cultivable land, not including acreage levee tax.
9 Not including predatory animal tax.
Distribution of Property Taxes According to Levying Jurisdiction and Purpose
In most of the 16 counties for which data were secured, the State as compared .with.the county and minor subdivisions, levied a relatively small proportion of the property tax. The :State tax in Montgomery County, Alabama, was over a third of the total, as shown in Table 6, while in Franklin County, Ohio, it was as low as 5.5 per cent of the total. In Pennsylvania and California no real estate tax was levied by the State. The proportion of property taxes levied by the county government ranged from 18 to 79 per cent, and by townships and local districts, not including incorporated places, from 11 to 82 per cent.
The varying proportions of the total tax levied by the county or minor subdivisions of the county merely reflect differences in method of conducting county and local affairs. If there is a high degree of centralization in the county as regards school and road finance, as, for example,
in Montgomery County, Alabama, 2/ a large proportion of local taxes will be levied by the county rather than by local districts. If the opposite of this prevails as in Chester County, Pennsylvania, most of the tax may be levied by townships and local districts. Variation in the proportion levied by the State is partly explained in the same way, although the State's part is affected more by revenues from sources other than the property tax.
Analysis of the use made of the tax dollar can be shown accurately only where statistics of expenditures are available. In the absence of such data tax levies indicate in a general way the major purposes of taxation. Of these oily two classes, school and road, could be separated with a reasonable degree of exactness. In 14 of the 16 counties, over a third of all property taxes was levied for schools, and in 3 of these counties over half of the total was for schools. Only in the Pennsylvania and Mississzippi Counties was as :~ch as a third of property taxes levied for road purposes, and the road tax was more.than the school tax only in the Mississippi County. Revenues obtained from other sources, of course, have some effect on the proportion of the road tax shown here. It has not been possible to show trustworthy comparisc:s_ of taxes used for general and miscellaneous expenses, inacnach as .e States make specified levies for certain expenses, while others a popriate revenues from the general fund for such expenses. Moreover, soine el,ticizy in the use of the general fund with respect to education and" highways is allowed in sme States.
As a rule, most of the State property tax, where State taxes were
levied at all, was for general exns e, although in 3 of the counties about half of the state levy was for schools of one kind or another. The general
12/ Local school districts in this county, undar an enabling Act, have ceen consolidated into a county-wide district with unifo:m Tzax rate for school purposes. Local road taxes are also levied uniformly over the county.
Table 7. Distribution as to Purpose for which Property Taxes are. Levied.
S t a t e Road
and : Education : and All
-C o u n t y Bridge Other
Pennsylvania Chester 39.4 : 42.3 : 18.3
Ohlo Franklin 34.0 19.8 : 46.2
Indiana' Tipton 57.2 22.8 20.0
Michigan Lenawee 24.6 : 27.2 : 48.2
South-Dakota Moody 34.3 : 15.0 : 50.7
Iowa Union 38.9 : 25.5 : 35.6
Story 49.9 : 19.3 : 30.8
Nebraska Wayne 45.8 30.0 : 24.2
Alabama Montgomery 35.3 14.7 : 50.0
ississippi Tunica 7.4 : 35.3 57.3
Tennessee Rutherford : 52.0 : 15.1 : 32.9
Arkansas St. Francis : 43.6 : 32.7 : 23.7
Colorado Delta 49.8 : 21.5 : 28.7
Otero 59.9 19-.8 : 20.3
Idaho Madison 46.7 13.6 39.7
California Merced 34.5 : 22.5 : 43.0
expense item is usually more important in county levies, although in a few counties, according to the system which happens to prevail, school and road taxes may constitute a large part. Township and special district taxes are usually for school, road and miscellaneous expense of a local character.l-3/ Over 80 per cent of the school- tax in the counties studied in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Tennessee, and Colorado was levied by townships and local districts. In Michigan, South Dakota and MY-ississippi the school tax was levied primarily by the county. In Idaho and California counties this levy was about-equally divided between county and local districts, while in Montgomery County, Alabama, it was about equally divided between State and county. in St. Francis County, Arkansas, the State levied about a third and local districts about twothirds of school taxes.
In the levy of prope-ty taxes for highway purposes the County plays the leading role. In Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, South Dakota, Iowa, Alabama, Yississippi, Colorado and California, approximately two-thirds or more of the road tax was levied by the county. In these counties the remainder of the tax was levied by townships and local districts, except in Ohio, Indiana, and Colorado, where the State levied a small proportion of the tax. In the Pennsylvania and Arkansas counties local districts levied most of the tax. In q'ayne County, Nebraska, the county levied 60 per cent of road taxes, and
L/ In a few cases it has not been possible to separate from other taxes the road, tax levied by townships but the effect on the fi4al result is unimportant.
the State and local districts shared the remainder equally. In Madison County, Idaho, the State levied over half 'of the tax and the county the remainder. In Rutherford Ccunty, Tennessee, the State levied about a third and local districts two-thirds.
Practically every conceivable combination of State, county and local tax levies is thus shown 'for the few counties considered. Analysis of the general property tax in this respect, however, fails to give a complete picture of State and local fisedl systems. Some of the revenues for school and especially for highway purposes is obtained from sources other than the
general property tax. Accurate analyses of the sources of all reverrnues, on the one hand, and the expenditut-e of such revenues, on the other, would have more significance. While this has not been done in the present study, the system of distribution of tax revenues is known to have a direct bearing on the problem of farm real estate taxation.
The general property tax is the principal reliance of State and
local governments, as shown in table 1 of the Appendix, but considerable revenues are obtained for State purposes from other sources. The amount and the use made of ,.ch special revenues will determine in a measure the relative amount 'of taxes paid on real estate. For instance, in view of the present demand for educational and highway services and facilities, the State that shifts the responsibility of financing these special functions of government to the county or local districts may expect heavy real estate taxation. This is true for the reasons that local taxation in rural districts means general property taxation, and that, general property taxation always degenerates essentially into a tax on real estate. Distribution of revenues,, therefore, is an important part of the problem.
What is the-relation of State to local expenditures? Certainly, the State's obligation goes. further than merely fixing certain standards for the local government to follow without giving, any financial support to the maintenance- of such standards. The State has: a direct financial obligation to the locality in maint-Eining those services and facilities having general, as distinguished from local, benefits. Many States have undoubtedly shirked this responsibility, in part at least, as regards public education and highways. The direct result has been heavier taxation of farm real estate. Professor John A. Hobson; dealing with the same problem in England, says: '"It is equally clear that, if the State is to require conformity to a national standard of efficiency on the part of local administratorv, it must be prepared to assist in the finance."14/
Some have erroneously believed that a reduction in State revenues will mean a reduction in their tax bill. On the contrary, a reduction in State revenues may have the opposite effect on certain groups of taxpayers, especially farmers, unless such reduction' is merely for the purpose of curtailing the State's administrative expense. Where the State withholds its support from public education, highways, and like functions, in so far as such services have general rather than local importance, the localities
l4j Hobson, John A., Taxation in the New State, p. 241.
must take up the burden where the State leaves it, with resulting higher loc'1a taxation.While no final conclusions may be drawn on the"basis of limited data, certain facts in the present report appear significant. A large percentage of farm rent in many counties was paid out in taxes in 1919, when rents were higher and taxes lower than they'-are at present. There is reason to believe,- in fact, that since 1919, tax s have absorbed all the income from rent on many of the less favored farms." Excessive farm real estate taxation results from the attempt to apply sale value 'as a uniform measure of the tax to classes of property yieldi-rthg-differing rates of return and varying in the difficulty with which they are reached under general property tax methods. The solution of this part of the problem may finally be found in the assessment of certain rather than-uncertain values, and in the measurement of the tax more nearly than it is now according +to earning capacity. The situation would further -be remedied by raising-more revenues from sources that are now yielding a smaller tax return than they might for distribution in such a way as to relieve the pr'esent excessive local tax burden. A degree of retrenchment in public expenditures along some lines is doubtless advisable,--but no permanent measure of relief for farmers is to be expected Without thorough readjistment in State and local fiscal methods.
Tab le. 1. 'General property taxes, percentage of total tax revenues, by states, and xino.r. -civil divi'sior.s, 1922 (totals expressed in thousands of dullard)
:To tal -taxes : ;General
(not including : General : property tax,
Civil Divisions :special asers,-: prorE2'ty :per cent of
-. merit) X to tal
DolarsDI~ 'Per cent
Alabama 29,229 22,706 77.7
State 10,305 6,633 : 64.4
Coun~ties .12,123 : 14204.3
TiS~~iip and District 2
Incorfr-:ied_ towns -and-._ci ties:. 6,801 : 4,646 : 68.3
Miz~na 19,692 : 8558 9.
State 6,315 :5,680 : 89.'9
C:),,1: t ie s 6,626 6,451 : 97.4
:owin hiL and District 4,774 4,665 : 97.7
Tncorroorated towns and cites 1,0177 1,762 89.1
Ark.ansas 20,471 :16,718 : 81.7
State 6,444 4,686 : 72.7
Counties .5,717 :4,433 77.5
To1vns r!4i-, and District 6,280 :6,280 100.0
incoroorated towns and cities- 2,030 :1,319 65.0
Calif ornia : 207,372 : 157,507 76.0
State 43,699 :5 .01
Counties 6 64, 13 : 63,049 98.3
:ovins-nip E'nd D-istrict 91 9112 100
Incorporated towns and cities: 60,4 C5.7~41 91.6
Colorado 46,016 : '*2550 192.5
State .8,955 :6, 575 73.4
Count ie s. 1,10S 11,Y9 95.8
Toirvis. _- and District :15, ')4 15,96 100.0
Terpoc.to--yns an~ii~:___ 8,217 : 93.5
Connecticut .63,435 ~:46,610 : 73.5
S tot"-.e 16,508 : 2,2189 13.9
Counties 1 1,15 : 9;P, 79.4
Tov-n _hip and. district. 4,016G 31-F 50 : 90.9
Irrr')our,3te towng and cities:- 41,759 : 97695.2
Table 1. General property taxes, percentage of' total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisions, 1922. (continued)
Total taxes C.eneral
(not including: Genqrq. property tax,
Civil Divisions :special assess-: property :per cent of'
merit) .taKe s total
Delaware 8,005 .. 4,478 55.9
Stae .3 'S .,19 505 12.9
Counties .1,687 1,671 99.1
To wnship and District 2
Incrp:orat6d tovins and. cities 2,399 2,m :0 96. 0
Florida 34,285 : 015 88.0
State .8, 588 ..5,417 63. 1
C om i e s .12,261 12.,051. 98.3
omship and District -,011il 5,011 100.0
.JncornzorateAd towns and cities 8,425 7,677 91.3.
Georgia 41,537 34,362 82-.7
State 10,969 6, 342 58.4
Counties 15,133 : 14, 7511 97.3
Tov'nshi v and. District: 0 800 Bo 100.0
Incor-porated towns end cities 14,735 12,439 84.8
Idaho 18,717 : 17,23 AL92.1l
State 3,480 :2,717 ~ .
Cou nt ies 7,036 6,422' 91. 3
To -in zh-ip and i s tri c 5,961 5,949 99.8
Incorporated towns anfl cities 2,240 2,145 93.8
Illinois 2,!8, 955 : 217,694 87.4
State 0556 13,222 3.
Counties ,24,505 24, 2 67 99. 0
Townh'ip and 7Dis t r'ict '0'3D 11:10 99.
Incorporated towns~ and cities 72,586 : 63,983 88.1
Indiana 121,5 356 113,467 9.
State 18,478 12,420 67.2
Counties 32, 323 31 9,69. 98.9
Township and District 0884,7 8.3
LIncorporated towns and cities 20,737 20108 : 97.0
Table 1. General property taxes, perc :tage of total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisions, 1922. (continued)
STotal taxes :. : General.
: (no.t including: General :property tax, Civil Divisions :special assess-: property :. per cent
: rrent) : taxes : of total
: Dollars : Dol lars : PTer cent
Iowa : 111,343 : 96,601 : 86.8
State : 21,983 : 8,916 : 40.6
Counties : "23,876 : 23,150 : 97.0
Township and: District : 50,247 : 50,001 : 99.5
Incorporated. towns and cities : 15,237 : 14,534 : 95.4
Kansas : 71,123 : 65,961 : 92.7
State : 8,639 : 6,642 : 76.9
Counties : 18,104 : 16,265 : 89.8
Township and District : 3, 738 : 32,050 : 97 .9
Incorporated towns and cities 11,542 : 11,004 : 94.5
Kentucky : 46,609 : 39,686 85.1
State : 15,376 : 10,650 : 69.3
Counties : : -9,767 : 9,089 : 93.1
Township and District : 9,600 : 9,600 : 100.
Incorporated. towns and cities : 11,866 1 0,347 87.2
Louisiana : 51,023 : 43,092 84.5
State : 16,701 : 10,580 63.3
Parishes 1: 0,377 : 10,180 98.1
Township and. District : 8,108 : 7,876 97.1
Incorporated towns and cities : 15,837 : 14,455 91.3
Maine : 27,925 21,511 77.0
State 9,170 : 3,670 : 40.0
Counties :1,056 : 1,056 : 100.0
Township and District 6,621 : 6,324 : 95.5
incorporated- towns and cities 11,078 : 10,461 : 94.4
Maryland : 45,763 : 36,293 : 79.3
State : 12,442 : 4,739 : 38.1
Counties : 8,941 : 8,642 : 96.7
Township and- District 11 : 9 : 81.8
Incorporated- towns and cities : 24,.369 __ 22,.903 : 94.0
Table 1. General property taxes, percentage of total tax revenues, by
states and mifor civil divisions, 1922. (continued)
: Total taxes : : Gencral
:-(not including. : General :property tax, Civil Divisions :special assesst-: property : per cent
: ment) : ta., es : of botal
: Toi la-,. : Dollars : Per cent Massachusetts : 209,112 : 155,222 : 74.2
State : 38,098 : 12,000 : 31.5
Counties : 5,718 5,621 : 98.3
Township and District ': 363 .: 153 : 93.9
Incorporated towns and cities 165,133 1: 177,448 : 83.2
Michighn : 186,672 : 163,271 : 875
State .: 45, 997 : 28,:362 : 61.?
Counties : .289 ': L3;963 : 81.8
Township and District .: 46,237 : 46,213 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities : 65,169 : 4,733 : 99.3
Minnesota : 121,241 : 100,654 : 83.0
State : 29,635 : 0, 282 : 34.7
Counties .21,993 3 21 ,804 : 99.1
Township and DTistrict 33, 563 : 32,561 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities 26,043 : 35,C07 :? 97.1
Mississippi :. 35,'725. 30,713 : 86.0
State : 9,080 : 6,490 : 71.5
Counties : 8,876 : 8,255 : 93.0
Township and District : 11166 : 9,869 : 88.4
Incoroorated tovns and cities 6,603 6,099 92.4
Missouri : 95,025 : 79,077 : 83.2
State : 16,460 : 4,971 : 30.2
Counties 16, 34 : 16,325 : 99.8
Township and District : 34,000 : 33,901 : 99.4
Incorporated towns and cities : 28,111 23,880 84.9
Montana : 24,,253 : 22,067 : 91.0
State 3,416 : 2,054 : 60.1
Counties : 8,922 : 8,454 : 94.8
Township and Disttict : 8,993 : 8,876 : 98.8
Incorporatd towns and cities : 2 932 : 2,683 : 91.5
-'. 22Table 1. General property taxes, percentage of total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisions, 1922. (continued)
Total taxes: : General
:(not including : General :property tax, Civil Divisions :special assess-: property : per cent
itent) taxes : of total
Nebraska : 58,011 : 54,348 93.7
State : 10,577 : 9,748 : 92.2
Counties 12,089 : 9,893 : 81.8
Township and District 26,775 : 26,464 : 98.8
Incorporated towns and cities 8,570 : 8,243 : 96.2
Nevada 5,764 : 5,241 : 90.9
State 1,477 : 1,295 : 87.7
Counties 3,244 : 3,097 : 95.5
Township and District 406 : 406 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities 637 : 443 : 69.5
New Hampshire : 19,359 : 14,662 75.7
State 5,562 : 3,109 : 55.9
Counties 1,086 : 1,086 : 100.0
Township and District : 3,350 : 2,510 : 74.9
Incorporated towns and cities : 9,361 : 7,957 : 85.0
New Jersey : 155,904 : 135,342 : 86.8
State 36,363 : 22,351 : 61.5
Counties : 25,021 : 24,579 : 98.2
Township and District : ?2,186 : 21,734 : 98.-0
Incorporated towns and cities 72,334 : 66,678 : 92.2
New 1'exico 11,046 : 10,262 : 92.9
State 3;091 : 2,537 : 82.1
Countie s 6,602 : 6,499 : 98.4
Township and District 601 : 601 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities 752 : 625 : 83.1
Yew York : 595,881 : 463,851 : 77.8
State 117,057 : 23,971 : 20.5
Counties : 30,553 : 29,109 : 95.3
Township and District 43,437 : 40,254 : 92.7
Incorporated towns and cities : 404,834 : 370,517 91.5
Table 1. General prorpettUy taxes;,~otat f~ tax revenues, ~y
states and minor civildiisos 1922. (continued)
otal9. t,-X _s :&eneral
1=111clAirg : Genralrs propertyr tax,
Civil 'Divisions :cpeci,?, a sess-: po typer en
-_____IM_ :tLwxs of totn31
Do.~ o1r Per cent
North Carolina- A6,-(2: 3, E2 7 6. 4
State 9, 933: 1, 265 12.7
Coumtie s 20,172: 19,805 .: 95.5
To wr i~ -oPnd District .5,16 5,01 98.1
T-op:t-d t own:s and cities lC,329i* 9,172 8 8. 3
N~orth. Dakota 2 9,358' ;7,48 5 9-3.6
St te 4,847 3,365 69.4
Counties 6,753 6,633 98.2
Township and Dist-rict H,. C.0S6 1 576 98.5
Iacornoratod towiis. and citi es 1,9 ;., 1,911 917.9
Ohio 251,0Id19 21.9,668 87.5
State 10<017, 076 41.6
C0oun.t i es 72,0 70,128 97.3
Tcovn shij -id Dis trict, *7,O 7,79.8
Ino'1r tcymows and cities ___13-05,~9 1.5
Oklahoma 53,074 44 '319 83.5
Conis6,75 1,1L46 17.1
1532 11,524 7.0
Township ana. Jis t ri ct 23,329 c2,3 7. 5
Incor-por ed~ towns and cities: 9J0 8,841 91. 1
Oregon 41,402 35,4 05 85.5
Stata r 12910 7,303 55.6
Counties !L. 1-47 12, 0-r: 99.3
Townshi-p and- District 9,458 0,~ 100.0
IncorTporrted -towns and cities ,876,585 95.6
PF~nnsylvania 30C,082 2L4,917 5 75.0
Stato 4/ -67,189
Coun-ties. '32,9M5 219,985 91.1
To-wn-shi-p and District 112,610 111,783 99. 4
Incor-pdrat'd toluns and cities _87, 358 83,202 9.
Table 1. General property taxes, percenta6geof total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisionris, 1922. (continued)
: Total taxe : : General
: (not incIuding : General :property tax, Civil Divisions :special assess-: property : per cent
: ment) : taxes : of total
: Dolirs : Dollars : Per cent Rhode Island. : 24,001 : 18,413 : 76.7
State : 6,438 : 1,180 : 18.3
Township and District 2/
_Incorporated towns and cities : 17,563 : 17,233 : 98.1
South Carolina : 23,420 : 19,558 : 83.5
State : 6,999 : 4,943 : 70.6
Counties : 5,147 : 4,620 : 89.8
Township and District : 6,277 : 5,968 : 95.1
Incorporated towns and cities : 4,997 : 4,027 : 80.6
South Dakota : 31,845 : 30,374 : 95.4
State : 4,289 : 3,466 : 80.8
Counties : 8,442 : 7,966 : 94.4
Township and District : 14,818 : 14,744 : 99.5
Incorporated towns and cities : 4,296 : 4,198 : 97.7
Tennessee : 42,912 : 35,202 : 82.0
State : 10,121 : 6,106 : 60.3
Counties : 19,563 : 17,485 : 89.4
Towinship and District : 431 : 426 : 98.8
Incorporated towns and cities : 12,797 : 11,185 : 87.4
Texas : 108,970 : 94,890 : 96.3
State : 30,210 : 19,677 : 65.1
Counties : 27,263 : 24,296 : 89.1
Township and District : 21,492 : 21,492 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities 30,005 : 29,425 : 98.1
Utah : 17,034 : 15,398 : 90.4
State : 5,067 : 3,767 : 74.3
Counties : ,04 : 3,028 : 98.2
Township and District : 5,416 : 5,416 : 100.0
Incorporated' towns and cities :3,467 : 3,187 : 91.9
Table 1. General property taxes, percentage of total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisions., 1922. (continued)
: Total taxes : : General
:(not includin- : General :property tax, Civil Divisions special assess-: property : per cent
: rent) : taxes : of total
Dollars : Dollars : Per cent
Vermont 12,052 : 9,075 : 75.3
State : 3,946 : 1,608 : 40.8
Counties : 55 : 55 : 100.0
Township and District : 4,150 : 3,810 : 91.8
Incorporated towns and cities 3,901 3,602 : 92.3
Virginia : 46,618 : 32,093 : 68.8
State : 18,288 : 6,905 : 37.8
Counties : 12,170 : 11,773 : 96.7
Township and District 2 :
Incorporated towns and cities : 16,160 : 13,415 -83.0
Washington : 68,776 : 60,186 : 87.5
State : 17,887 : 10,915 : 61.0
Counties : 17,061 : 15,783 : 92.5
Township and District : 21,202 : 21,202 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities : 12,626 : 12,286 : 97.3
West Virginia : 42,294 : 35,058 : 82.9
State : 9,600 : 3,064 : 31.9
Counties : 12,025 : 11,710 : 97.4
Township and District : 16,079 : 16,079 : 100.0
Incorporated towns and cities : 4,590 : 4,205 : 91.6
,isconsin 124,340 : 106,248 : 85.4
State : 26,170 : 15,991 : 61.1
Counties : 23,299 : 21,833 : 93.7
Township and District : 33,433 : 32,630 : 97.6
Incorporated towns and cities : 41,438 : 35,794 : 86.4
hyoming : 8,488 : 7,438 : 87.6
State : 2,248 : 1,658 : 73.8
Counties : 2,544 : 2,286 : 89.8
Township and District : 2,364 : 2,306 : 97.5
Incorporated towns and cities : 1,332 : 1,188 : 89.2
Table 1. General property taxes, percentage of total tax revenues, by
states and minor civil divisions, 1922. (continued)
Total taxes : General
Civil Divisions :(not including : General :property tax,
(Not including District of .special assess-: property : per cent
Co l-umbia) ment) taxes : of total
Dollars fDollprs : Per cent
All States : 4,002,698 : 3,32-1,484 : 83.0
States 858,142 348,293 : 40.6
Counties 725,525 : 687,286 : 94.7
Township and District -953,876 941,142 98.7
Incorporated towns' and cities 1,465,155 1,344,763 91.8
I/ As reported by the Census of 1922, but not including special assessments.
2J No township or district tax levies.
Y3 )To county tax levies'.
4' O state general property tax levies.
Table 2. Comparison of farms studied with all farm-s in the county. 1}
: Average cdnsus : Proportion of
State : : :valuation of land : value of real
and : Average acreage : Improved acreage_;,a nd'improvements : estate in
County :-per farm : : per acre : improvements
:Selected:All farms:Selec Ld:All farms:Selected:All farms:Selected: All
Farms : : Farms : :" srms : : Farms : Farms
: Atres : Acres :Per cent:Per cent :Dollars : Dollars :Per cent:Percent New York : : :
Delaware : 153.1 : 161-5 : 57.8 : 56.8 : 29 : 35 : 48.8 : 52,2 Niagara : 79-.0 : 71:. 2 : 87.8 91.6 : 110 : 142 : 29.6 : 37.8 Pennsylvania: : : : : : :
Chester : 84.7 : 77,0 : 78.4 : '81.1 : 116 : 128 : 48.0 : 52.8 Ohio : : :
Franklin : 88.2 : 78.5 : 83.9 : 89.3 : 195 : 195 : 11.0 : 16.8 Indiana :
Tipton : 82.3 : 85.6 ;88.9 89.5 239 : 244. : 10.8 : 13.4
Meacoupin : 100.1 : 135.0 : 78.0 78.0' 128 125 : 15.0 : 14.8
Lenawee : 83.3 : 89.9 : 82.8 '81.0 : 126 121 : 33.8 : 31.9
Dane : 109.0 : '16.0 : .72.4 71.0 : 155 149 : 19.7. : 22.8
kinne so ta :
!,EcLeod : 141.4 : 122.2 : 83.3 84.4 .: 137 .. 155 : 14.8 : 20.6
South Dakota: : "
hiioody : 230.8 : 246.4 : 83.4 83.8 : 206 : 194 : 9.4 : 9.4
Union : 145.4 : 1.58.8 : 84.1 : 85.9 : 166 : 170 : 11.3 : 12.6
Story : 145.6 : 148.1 : 86.7 : 89.2 : 296 : 310 : 7.5 : 9.7
Nebraska : : :
wayne : 184.3 : 192.8 : 97.2 : 96.5 : 243 : 247 : 7.5 : 9.3
Kansas : : : :s:
Butler : 282.8 : 287.6 : 50.8 : 54.4 : 57 : 59 : 11.0 : 12-8
Virginia : : : : : :
So.Hazmpton : 134.1 : 83.3 : 34.8 : 40.4 : 40 : 55 : 15.6 : 23.5 ,o. Carolina: : : : : : :
Halifax : 65.2 : 71.7 : 45.9 : 45.5 : 48 : 62 : 16.8 : 22.2 Georgia : : : :
Bleckley : 97.6 : 84.5 : 64.1 : 65.0 : 42 : 54 : 16.8 : 17.5 Alabama : :
kontgomery : 41,2 : 64.6 : 81.8 : 71.8 : 51 : 42 : 18.4 : 20.8 Mfississippi : : : :
Tunica : 37.3 : 33.3 : 87.3 : 71.3 134 : 158 : 14.6 : 13.4
Tennessee : : : : :
Rutherford : 79.9 : 68.8 : 60.0 : 61.4 69 : 74 : 20.4 : 22.8
Arkansas : : :
St. Francis: 36.7 : 41.5 : 81.8 : 70.2 99 : 81 : 14.8 : 20.1
Table 2. Comparison of farms studied with all farms in the county.
: : -: Average census : Proportion of
State : : :valuation of land : value of real
and : Average acreage : Improved acreage : and improvements : estate in
County : .per,.farm : per acre : improvements
:Selected:All farms:Selected:All farms:Selected:All farms:Selected: All : Farms : Farms : srmsarms. Farms : Farms
Acres : Acres :Per cent:Per cent, : Dollars: Dollars :Per cent:Percent Oklahoma : . Payne : 145.2 : 154.9 : 64.3 : 62.3: 38 : -42 : 15.7 : 17.4.
Colorado .: : : : .: :
Delta : 69.3; : 99.5 : 54.. : 43.9 : 79 : 85 : 15.0 : 16.7
Otero : 100.3. : 225.0 : 78.9 : 28.2 : 187 : 60 : 13.6 : 12.7
Utah : : : : :
Salt Lake : 42.7 : 130.1 : 76.1 : 29.1 : 278 : 84 : 11.8 : 16.9 Idaho : : : : :
Ada : 46.9 : 92.7 : 86.6 : 64.6 : 238 : 142 : 11.4 : 13.9
Mq dison : 93.6 : 234.5 : 94.3 : 71.3. : 252 80 : 3.4 : 10.5 Oregon
Or go : : : : : :, : :
Washington: 102.0 : 72.3 : 57.0 : 54.3 : 137 : 153 : 12.2 : 16.9
California: : : : : : :
Sacramento: 90.9 : 186.7 : 93.8 : 71.8 : 185 : 144 : 7.6 : 9.4 Merced : 109.7 : 394.4 : 85.8 : 45.1 : 222 : 78 : 9.5 : 11.0 Arizona : : : : : :
Maricopa : 83.8 : 204.2 : 95.3 : 34. : 308 : 114 : 4.7 : 7.9 If Census of 1920..
Tab le 3. Net Cash Rent, percentage of. Census Vahaetion, Selected Farms,
'"et Cash, Rent, : Net Cash Rent,
S t ate percentage -of : S t.ate :pe-tentage of
almd census valua- and :r cer-ous valluaC ou nt y tion (before : C u nt y :ation (16efore
______:ded.uctin taxes) .decut t jE _a-.e s)
Per Cent Pe.r Cent
Je w York DclTaare- 4.3 :Georgia Bleckley 7.1
Y-4 ia ;ar a 2.5 : Alabama Mvontgomery 4. 7
Peni~ylvayiia Chester 1.6 : ississippi -- 'Dnica 10.7
O1-.o rkli-"n 3.2. : Tennessee R utherford 4.6
Tr _an T ilton 3.9 Arkansas -- St-rni 5.1
11inois h acoupin 2.8. Oklahoma Payne35
Li g 1 erawee 3.5 :Colorado Delta 5.1
'.ds, nse 2.6 Otero 6.7
-';ota lvcLeod .2.6 : Utah -Salt Lake 3.5
Sc-)tn.- Dakota ivoody 2.3 : Idaho Ada 4.2
Iowa Union 3.2 : Idaho K adison 4.5- story 2.5 : Oregon 7 iashingllton 3.2
!Tebrtisika 2 .-e24; : Calif ornia. Sacr~mento 5.7
Kansas 3utler 0".0 Lc .rcod 4.4
Virsinia Souithampton 4.9 :Arizona 1 Marico-oa 8.7
North Carolina, alifex 4.3
Table 4. Rates of Depreciation and Repairs, and of Insurance A1
By Counties, and Total Deduction per Acre from Gross Rent.
F:Rate of;Rate of : Total : :Rate of:Rate of : Total
:depre- :insur- : deduc- : :depre- :insur- : deducS t a t e :ciation:ance per:tion per : S t a t e :ciation:ance per:tion per
:and re-: $100 :acre for : :and re-: $100 :acre for
and :pairs : valua- :deprecia-: and :pairs : valua- :deprecia: on :tion of :tion, re-: : on :tion of :tion, reC o u n t y :build- :build- :pairs,and: C o u n t y :build- :build- :pairs,and : ings. : ings. :insurance: :ings. : ins. : insurance
Per Cent:Dollars : Dollars : Per Cent:Dollars : Dollars
New York :Georgia
Delaware 4.0 .36 .58 : Bleckley 7.1 1.24 .56
"iiagara 4.0 .36 1.39 :Alabama
Pennsylvania : kontgomery 5.8 1.62 .65
Chester 4.0 .40 2.39 :16ississippi
Ohio : Tunica 7.9 1.62 1.77
Franklin 2.3 .25 .53 :Teinessee
Indiana : Rdtherford 5.4 .67 .8.
Tipton 3.0 .33 .83 :Arkansas
Illinois : St. Francis 6.5 .97 1.06
Macoupin 3.0 .37 .63 :Oklahoma
Michigan : Payne 6.0 .87 .39
Lernawee 3.7 .43 1.71 :Colorado
4isconsin : Delta 7.2 .50 .89
Dane 3.6 .23 .1.15 : Otero 7.2 .50 1.93
Minne so ta :ULtah
McLeod 4.0 .35 .86 : Salt Lake 4.4 .57 1.58
South Dakota : Idaho
Moody 4.0 .25 .81 : Ada 4.6 .69 1.39
Iowa : Madison 4.6 .69 .44
Union 4.9' .30 .95 :Oregon
Story 5.1 .30 1.18 : Washington 4.7 .52 .86
hayne 5.0 .24 .95 : Sacramento 4.5 .55 .70
Kansas : kerced 4.5 .55 1.03
Butler 5.0 .35 .33 :Arizona
Virginia : Maricopa 4.4 1.37 .78
Southampton 4.5 .73 .31 :
Ealifax 4.5 .70 .51 :
1 In States where both old line and farmers' mutual insurance companies operate, an everage of the rates used was derived by taking into account the percentage of business done by each in the State. For example, if in a State three-fQurths of farmers' insurance is carried by farmers' mutual insurance companies and one-fourth by old line companies, the respective rates were weighted by three-fourths and onefourth. In the Central and Northwestern States the rate used was about the same as that of the farmers' mutuals, while in most Southern States the rate was usually that of the old line companies. The cost of insurance, whether insurance was actually carried or not, was computed for all farms upon the fssumption that the rate for any area reflects approximately the average loss sustained from the usual hazards covered b7 such insurance.
Table 5. Assessed valuation of farm real estate in relation to Census valuation, 1920
Statuor, rovisions, 1921 -:valua- Census:sesd
State and-*:Sxemption of farm R ate of assessment : tion valua- :to census
.Countyr :-Yeal estate -:of far'I rdal es- r.er :tiori per-:valuation
-~~ : tate.,~ acre 2/: acre : 2
..:Dollars Dolrs: Per cent
New York :Real property pur- :Full vaiue'-*according:
Delaware chasedd by pension mon.;:to amount -property :17.25 : 2.8.57 : 60.4
Niagarla :ey exempt to' the 'ex- :woiald sell 'for be- :75.78 :110.31 : 68.7
:terit of $5,000. Lim- :tween a willing sell-:
:ite'd acreage of forest-:er and a willing
landd planted and reg. :buyer.
:istered. ___ ____Pennisyl'vania: .- ~ 38 1.1: 6.
Cbe:,teT' :!.To exemption738 15.1 68
11io. :True value,' as ascerX ra3,klin :116 exemption :tpined by ,usual sell-: 116.20 194.67 : 59.7
:ing.pride&Thr cash :
:at voluntary sale
Indiana :50% of mortgaged value :At price property
Ipton :liM .ted. to $1,000 per :would bringat pri- :197.00 :238'.63 : 8.
:,person vate sa le
11lin 0is :Full vabhe,' 50 per :(20. 23): (15.9)
14acoupiLn No~ e xemp ti on' :cent of which is tax-: 40.46 :127.58 : 31.8
Michgan-Cash value or usual:
Len~~;e :~ exeptin' se lling price :103.31 :126.43 : 8.
Wiisconsin :land of 20 to 40 acres:Full value6- that Dane :settled as a homestea~d:could be obtained at :115.21 :154.95 74.4
:and, devoted to agri- :private sale
:culture, exeinpt for 3
M'inne sota .:Fuall value,'33-1/3 per (34.09): : (25.0)
1Yc~eod, 36~ exemption :cent of which is tax-,- 102.27 :136.61 : 74.9
So. Dakota :Dwelling houses occu.- : Cash value* price :
kody:pied by owner exempt :property is fairly :94.71 :206,39 : 45.9
:.to the extent of $500 :worth in money, not
:3/ :at auction'sale
Iowa :.Area of road adjacent:The value of the mar-: (16.79): :(10.1)
Union :to, farms exempt. :ket in the ordinary :67.16 : 165.83 : 40.5
*:course of trade, 25 : (Z4.00): :(8.1)
Story -. per cent of which is : 96.00 :296.07 32.4
____ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ __ taxab 1e
jl1ebraska ::Actua*L- va'lud, accord-: tgayne :ing to the market in : 147.86 ; 43. 31 60.8
:the ordinary course :
Table.,5.. Assessed valuation of farm real estate -in relation to Census
*:.Ass6s's e&1 -Tel ~ioi of
State Statutory Provisions,, 1921 :alua,- :Census :assessed
and : Exemption of' farm : Rate of assissmeni, :ti63i v ahiu- .:to census
County :real estate :of f arm real es- :"per :tion per.-valuation
tate. acre acre
:Dollars D dollars: Per cent Kansas :True vau in money
Butler :No exemption 35.09 57.01 6.
Virginia : J-air marke t lueSouthampton :No exemption :7.569 980: 19.1
No -Carolina: :Tuevlein money~Halifax. :!o exemption -'What property would :.'S8.97.': 47.'86 : 18.'?
bring-when sold for
:cash in the isua~l
Georgia V:Fair nierket -Value,
3leckley :No exemption :amount property would: 11.10 :4l..G 6 26.8
V :ring when" sold in
Alabama : feasot~~ cash vdlu'e: (9.74) :(19.1)
M~ontgomery:No exceptionn :0p ctofhch:123:50.'81 : 31.9
MissistipPi:No exemption :.At prices property
T~ic *:wotild bring at a vol-: 57.07 : 13.65 : 42.7
Tennessee-: :Actual cash value-:
Ruth er for d: 7o exemption :the p'r ice-tha could,: 13".81 :68,',6 6 19.4
.located, a private:
St.. Francis No exemption l 0.-90-_ '99.24: I.0.
Oklahoma *::Fair cash vaii.e -es-: Payne *:No exemption. :tima'ted!'price'of fair: 21. 91 '307.'56 : 58.3
:wand volluntary.;sale. :*
Delta :No eXemption- :1-all ca~h value: 43 .'07 : 79.02 : A 5
Otero 1487" :187.40 : 61.-3
Utah l :ull. cash val~iie
Salt Lake -;:o exmption :a mo u nt at which pi'op-:l48.85 4-278.13 : 53.5
*erty would be taken
:in' payment of-a just
:debt due from a sol:vent creditor
Table 5. Assessed valuation of farm real estate in rc.lation to Census valuation, 1920. (Continued)
State : Statutory Provisions, 1921 :valua- : Census :assessed
:d .:,Exeftption of farm : Rate of assessment : tion : valua- :to census
County : real estate .. : of farm real es- : per :tion per:valuation
te : acre : acre :
daho :Improvemients not ex- :Full cash value : : :
Ada :ceeding $200 in value : : 107.22 : 237.84 : 45.1
Iadison :are exempt. Special : : 58.62 : 252.12 : 23.3
.:exemption up to $1,000 :
:of property of widows : :
:and orphans and Union : : : :
;soldiers and sailors, : :
:when total assessment : : : :
:does not exceed $5,000 :
Oregon : :True cash value at : :
Washington:No exemption :voluntary sale in the: 53.01 : 136.51 : 38.8
:usual course of busi-: .:
California : .
Sacramento.:No exemption : : 47.25 : 184.85 : 25.6
Merced .: : 32.20 :.221.49 : 14.5
Arizona :Property of resident :Full. cash value as : : :
Iaricopa :widows not to exceed :given in payment of a: 128.40 : 307.75 : 41.7
:$1,000 where total :jut debt due from :
I:assessmeht does not :solvent creditor : : :
:exceed $2,000 : : :
I Although'the legal requirement is practically the same in most states, the terminology as expressed by different state laws is used in this table.
2 Figure in parentheses shows valuation upon which tax is based.
3/ This provision has been since repealed.
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
3 1262 089 21 4943
Table 6. farm Real Estatue Tax, percentage of Census Valuation ofl?,nd ImnproveLmentus of Selected Faa-iis, 192- l
Census Tftx Tax Percentag
State ajad Cquxity : va.1'iation : per ;of Census
__ __ __ __j e:7ac-e acre VYaaio
Dollars !: foliars, F er Cent
N'ew York Delaviare 28.57 .1
Nia~ara 110.31 .85 .8
Pennsylvania Ch -ester 115.71 1':2 0 1.0
Ohio -Tra-ril:lin 194.67 .74
Inidiana -Tipton 238. 63 1.41. .6
Illiiuois Naccupin 127.58 .64 .5
Mic'h-ag'n Ienewee 126.43 1.67 1.3
ico:n D Tane I5. ~1.18.8
i~~~est ,Mc~ed 136.61 .85
South -Dakota IC~ody 206.39 .77 .
Iowa Union 165.83: .84 .
Story 296.07 1.37 .
Nebraska, -Wayn~e 243.31 -67 .
Kansas -Butler 5.1.1.
Virginia Southamto 39.80 .11 .3
~th C -ir o 1i r T -Hali f ax 486.13 .3
Gcorgia, -Blec-key 414 .22 .5
Alabama 1,on-i&,'rorery 50.81 .17 .
fis -'s sim 1 Ttrni c a 133.65 1.611.
Tenneosce qut&h-r-ord 68.66 .24 .
Arkansag St. Fr'ancis 9.4.3.
Okleah1oma Payne 37.56,, .38 1.0
Colorado Delta 79.02 .961.
Uth- Otero 187.40 2.19 1.2
Uth Salt lake 278.13" 2.821.
Idaho kaz. '437.84 2.85 1.2
Yadison 252.12 1.76 .
Oregon iasl-ington 136.51 1.64 1.2
California Sacramento 184.85 1.36 .7
Merced 221.49 1.63 .7
Arizona M~arcopa, 307.75 2.61 .8
1/ huber of farms and total acreage are the sam ,e as shown in Table 1.